That's great, Melissa! I was asked to not say anything to my students about 10 years ago, and at that time, a painter with AIDS had a showing of his art at a local college. He would use a little of his blood in certain paintings to make it unique and to make a statement about AIDS. The people in the community wanted the school to force the artist to leave and to have those paintings destroyed. Really, these people were scared that they could catch AIDS from the paintings! I suppose that attitude transfered to other areas, including bg testing, and I got caught in the middle. I am glad that over the years, fewer people have hassled me about testing and injecting.
Greetings! As a college professor and a mother of a T1....I would advise you to share this important information with your professors/graduate student instructors/advisors/close classmates/roommates etc. Chances are some of the TAs won't know what diabetes is or how it effects brain function when you have lows or extreme highs. I've read reports of your brain needing 24-hour recovery from an extreme low. Every one wants you to succeed in school and your life opportunities...let people know so they can help if needed.
Here's my back to college...going to college advise for grades (sometimes hard to follow).
1. Tell those in a position of power over your grades.
2. Don't procrastinate with your own studies...if you get ill before a test/project/paper, you will be prepared if you don't put it off and wait to the last minute. We just never know...even for non-diabetics.
3. If you do have a problem because of diabetic complications/lows/highs, email, phone, send a message/the homework/the report in anyway. Ask for a small extension...one that fits a reasonable time frame. Professors only raise eyebrows if it a chronic request...for every test, paper, assignment.
4. Hang tough! You can do it!
Protocol, experience requires I let them know... but with some every once in a while I have kept it to myself. Never kept it secret with any exercise instructors though. By in large never needed anything my peers did not...
This term two of my teachers know. Though one of them teaches two of my classes and is my advisor for Graphic Design. The other one knows because I had to call her about not being at class. The only other people that know is the Director of the Campus and the Registar. He also deals with Student Services. Kind of a switch from not telling to telling my teachers. Though now with my laptop computer with all the applications I need and the internet at home, it makes it a lot easier.
i actually went to my school's healthy and disability office. they set me up with this doctor who i explained to what my systems and side effects could be, what medicine i need to take, etc. after that he printed out a few notes to give to my teacher and all my teachers were open to accept what i needed to do.
in all honest i was afraid to tell my teachers myself but hey, teachers are professionals and people too they understand.
I did talk to my professors about it, letting them know about my dm, but I think it went in one ear and out the other for most of them. I was actually in grad school when I was diagnosed, and the responses I got from the professors at that time ranged from "There are a lot of others who have worse problems" to "Don't cry in my office!" (said within hours of my dx), all of which really made me want to open up about my new diagnosis. The next group of profs I dealt with were not much better. My diabetes was spinning out of control, I was getting sicker and sicker, and all they could say was that diabetes wasn't really a matter of life and death. Their research, OTOH.....
Regardless of professor attitudes, I still recommend telling them about your diabetes, even if they really don't understand anything about it. Then if something happens during class, they should be able to speak for you.
I agree; the attitudes these professors showed was really sucky. The two comments that really stuck with me were the "Don't cry in my office" that was said within hours of my dx, and the "diabetes isn't a matter of life and death" comment. The irony about the "don't cry" comment is that the person who said it had recently suffered a tremendous loss of his own -- his wife miscarried -- so you'd think he would have been a bit more sensitive and compassionate toward someone else going through a major life change. Just goes to show you........
The "diabetes isn't a matter of life and death" comment came when I was arguing for direct instruction for diabetes education as opposed to using more discovery-based learning. He thought that it was totally OK for, say, a diabetic to learn how to inject insulin by stumbling around and making errors, that it wouldn't hurt the person. He refused to believe that quickly learning how to manage your dm is extremely important, no matter the issue I brought up. He's got a couple of young kids, both pre-teens, and I hope they don't develop diabetes, since their dad doesn't believe in actually telling them the mechanics of testing and injecting!
I let my professors know, usually because of food and testing. Till know I never had a big problem with my diabetes in class, testing can be done under the table and usually nobody notices anyways and I talked to my profs about eating during class and exams and they were really understandable...
I let professors know upfront. I didn't tell one prof and when I grabbed a snack in the middle of an exam, she pulled me aside, I told her I was diabetic and she asked to see my state medical card! I told her that if she wanted me to pass out in class and cause an even bigger scene, I could do that too, and that I would call the paramedicas in advance next time so they would know to come give me a boost....
safe to say, she lets me eat whenever I need to.
Other than that, I've yet to come up against any trouble...
Ive also come to notice that if I tell my professors, They make a point to get to know me and since they know me and look out for me, If im starting to struggle they kinda question me to make sure Im ok.
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